Hyperthermia is one of the most common reasons for referring to pediatricians. There can be many factors that cause a high fever in a child. Depending on the cause, doctors choose a therapy regimen. And sometimes they recommend doing nothing. We will tell you when tactics are shown, why you do not need to achieve t 36.6 ° C.
Normal t in children is from 35.5 to 37.5 ° C and above. The values depend on:
- characteristics of the body;
- t environment;
- time of day;
This parameter is regulated by an area of the brain – the hypothalamus. In case of an infectious disease – and this is the main culprit of fever, the hypothalamus increases t, acting as a “thermostat”. A high temperature in a child without symptoms is an adaptive response of the body. Fever helps fight off the pathogen. Most bacteria and viruses are killed; the synthesis of interferon-gamma, the production of antibodies, phagocytosis (destruction of microbes) are enhanced at t≥38.0 ° C. The reproduction of viruses, bacteria stops.
When there is no need for hyperthermia, the “thermostat” gives a command to lower t. The vessels dilate, sweating intensifies, which leads to reddening of the skin.
There is a “pink fever” – the skin is hyperemic, moist, and warm. Heat transfer corresponds to heat production. Usually, t is kept within 38.5 ° C, gradually normalizing. Reception of antipyretics is not required.
With pale fever, heat loss decreases, but heat production is increased. The vessels contract, the skin turns pale, and sweating decreases. Palms, feet are cold. Because of this, babies feel cold, they shiver. If it is cold outside (for example, mom wipes with cold water), the feeling of chilliness, vasospasm intensify.
This is a natural process of regulation of physiological processes. But sometimes the culprit of the high temperature in the child cannot be identified. Next, we will tell you why this happens.
Fever without symptoms
Up to 2 years
Up to two years old, children have a thermoregulation mechanism, a special way of life. This age is characterized by its own events. You should find out the origin of the high temperature in the child, and act accordingly. The most common situations: vaccination, teething, overheating, illness, intrauterine infection.
Vaccination is the introduction of substances that stimulate the immune system, cause the production of antibodies against viruses and bacteria. Waste products (toxins) of a microorganism, inactivated or killed microorganisms, synthetic drugs can be introduced.
Not all vaccinations will react. If the vaccine is reactogenic, then the child’s temperature rises without symptoms on the first day, and it lasts from several hours to several days (sometimes up to 14 days).
When teething occurs in the mouth, the content of inflammatory cytokines increases. Because of this, the child has a high fever without symptoms. Children can be moody, restless, gums swell. Appetite disappears due to discomfort. The malaise disappears in 2 – 3 days.
Teething is thought to be a diagnosis of exclusion. It is put only when all other reasons are excluded.
Fever in a child without symptoms after overheating
Due to the peculiarities of thermoregulation, a feverish state occurs due to overheating. This happens more often in newborns when it is hot, the bathing water is hot, the mother has worn too much clothes, or they are in the sun for a long time. Older children start to get feverish after active games. The temperature in a child without symptoms does not rise above 38.0 ° C and quickly normalizes.
Many diseases, including acute respiratory viral infections, begin almost without clinical manifestations. The only sign is the deviation of the thermometer values. Runny nose, cough, hoarse voice, other manifestations may appear later.
These diseases are:
- Children of this age often have stomatitis – inflammation of the oral mucosa. At the initial stage, the child has a fever without symptoms. Years and younger children refuse to eat, are capricious. Increased salivation is characteristic. Then ulcers appear in the mouth. Local therapy is required, treatment of the oral mucosa, sometimes – the appointment of systemic drugs;
- Angina, tonsillitis is a lesion of the pharyngeal tonsils, most often palatine, of an infectious nature. The causative agent is often streptococcus. The kid complains of sore throat. Because of this, he refuses to eat. Plaque and pustules form on the mucous membrane of the tonsils, but at the initial stage these phenomena may be absent, only a high temperature in a child without symptoms. Therapy consists in the use of antibacterial agents;
- Pathology of the upper respiratory tract – tracheitis, laryngitis, pharyngitis. Later, a dry cough, sometimes of a barking character, joins. The patient is restless, refuses to eat. With damage to the lower respiratory tract, the cough is moist, productive. Appointments are made taking into account the condition, type of cough, general condition;
- Otitis media is another disease that begins with a high fever in a child. In infants, it is difficult to understand the origin of anxiety: they refuse to eat, since the pain increases during sucking. Slightly older, they may say that their ear hurts. Therapy includes the use of local drops, antibacterial agents;
- Roseola, or sudden exanthema, is an acute viral disease characteristic of children under 2 years of age. The causative agent is the type VI herpes virus. It begins with a fever in a child without symptoms. The fever lasts for about 3 days, after which it decreases. Against the background of normalization of values, a rash appears;
- Genitourinary infections occur as a result of hypothermia, ingestion of feces into the urinary system, if the son or daughter is constantly in a diaper. The very first sign is a high fever in a child without symptoms, but an attentive mother will notice that the urine is cloudy, and the crumbs are more likely to ask for a pot. After diagnosis, antibacterial drugs are prescribed;
- Intestinal infections are accompanied by a febrile condition. Other manifestations are loose stools, weakness, nausea with vomiting. Therapy involves the use of funds to which the pathogen is sensitive;
- Inflammation of the meninges in a child begins with a fever without symptoms. He is restless, at times weak. In infants, the characteristic signs are a sudden cry with arching, poor appetite, vomiting, photophobia. Without treatment, inflammation quickly progresses rapidly – a coma develops. The therapy is carried out using antibacterial agents. The baby is treated permanently.
The child can become infected in utero or during childbirth, but the infection is realized immediately, and after 3 to 4 weeks after childbirth. For example, due to pneumonia, meningitis, sepsis caused by viruses, bacteria, fungi. The temperature in a newborn baby becomes high, he refuses to breast, the rest of the manifestations are found during the examination.
2 to 6 years old
After 2 years, children have significantly expanded contacts with the outside world: they begin to attend kindergarten, educational circles. The immune system changes. Babies are protected by passive immunity received from the mother. Gradually, its protective properties are reduced. These changes are responsible for the frequent incidence of infectious diseases.
Rubella, measles, chickenpox, scarlet fever become more frequent after 2 – 3 years: children begin to attend kindergarten, where they can come into contact with infected people who do not yet have a rash. The first sign of infection is a high fever in a child without symptoms. After a while, a rash appears: finely spotted, draining, pink, pale, vesicles, pustules, of different localization. Features of the rash depend on the type of pathogen.
Fever without symptoms
Acute respiratory viral infections
SARS become a frequent companion for this age. Children can get infected in kindergarten, on the playground. They begin with weakness, hyperthermia, then cough, runny nose, shortness of breath join. Can be complicated by sinusitis, bronchitis, pneumonia.
Preschoolers can have any diseases typical of childhood. Osteomyelitis, hepatitis, tuberculosis, cancer, leukemia, arthritis, and other pathologies may be accompanied by a febrile condition. A doctor’s consultation, a thorough examination is required to determine the cause and begin adequate treatment.
It should be remembered that children can pretend. For example, when they refuse to go to kindergarten. If you put a hot object on your forehead: a cup of tea, a bottle of water, your forehead will also be hot. And they may know this. Then pathological conditions should be excluded. But it is impossible to ignore the complaints of the crumbs, even if there is hyperthermia for no reason.
What to do
When parents notice a malfunction, they tend to panic. We understand: it can be difficult to pull yourself together. But this is necessary: the baby needs your help. We will tell you which steps are correct, in what sequence they need to be taken.
Step 1. Try to calm down. Perhaps your baby is simply overheated, and you will scare him with your hysteria. Calm him down too. If he has run before, invite him to sit for a while, play board games, and collect puzzles. Give water. Take off his clothes. If the clothes are wet, change them to dry ones. Open the window, ventilate the room. If the matter is overheating, after these measures, the high temperature in a child without symptoms will return to normal.
Step 2. When the heat lasts, put a thermometer. Take the device you use the rest of the time: mercury, electronic, or infrared. It is necessary to measure correctly, as written in the instructions. For example, an electronic thermometer should be held for some time after the beep.
Focus on the values that you received earlier. Quite possibly 37.0 ° C is normal for your preschooler.
Step 3. The obtained values are higher than usual – double-check, carry out the measurement again.
Step 4. Assess the child’s well-being. Perhaps he has become lethargic, sleepy, constantly begs for his arms, is naughty, eats poorly. Or the appearance changed: the cheeks turned red, a rash appeared, some part of the body became bright red or cyanotic, pale, the skin became dry. Ask him if something hurts him: ear, throat, stomach.
How to properly beat down a fever for no reason
First, let’s figure out when to start doing something. According to the WHO recommendations, antipyretics should be taken with hyperthermia above 39.0 ° C. Children with a tendency to seizures, chronic severe diseases of the circulatory system, respiratory organs, up to 2 months of age should be given antipyretics when the thermometer shows 38.0 – 38.5 ° C.
There are physical methods of cooling. Their advantage is safety, availability: every mother can use these methods. Wipe your son or daughter with a towel dampened with water. The water should be warm, cold will lead to vasospasm and the opposite effect. Water evaporates from the skin surface, t gradually decreases.
It is not recommended to use alcoholic beverages for these purposes: alcohol vapors will enter the respiratory tract, the solution will penetrate the skin. This is more dangerous than a fever in a child without symptoms.
Unfortunately, physical cooling methods work for a short period of time. After a while, the thermometer readings will creep up again. But when urgent action is needed, and there are no medications at home, these methods will be your saviors.
From medications in childhood, drugs based on ibuprofen and paracetamol are allowed :
- Paracetamol has antipyretic, analgesic effects. It is used in the form of syrup, oral tablets, suppositories;
- Ibuprofen is a drug with antipyretic, analgesic, anti-inflammatory effects. Produced in the form of syrup, rectal suppositories.
Despite the fact that the drugs are in children’s form, there is no 100% safety. If the dose is exceeded, they can cause damage to the liver and kidneys. Therefore, strictly follow the instructions for use of the drug.
In case of “pale fever”, in addition to antipyretic drugs, it is necessary to take vasodilators. After taking the medicine, vasospasm passes, heat transfer is normalized, t decreases more efficiently.
Take care of the psychological comfort of the preschooler. Let him do what he likes. Make sure he gets enough rest. Do not load him with assignments, lessons, do not force him to eat.
Make sure you drink enough. Ventilate the room: the more often the better. Do not re-give the medicine if the condition persists after the first dose.
At a temperature in a child without symptoms, the use of drugs based on analgin, acetylsalicylic acid is contraindicated. Analgin leads to agranulocytosis – a violation of the process of hematopoiesis. Immunity is critically reduced, and resistance to infections suffers.
Acetylsalicylic acid causes Reye’s syndrome – toxic damage to the brain, internal organs, and also provoke blood clotting disorders. Therefore, it cannot be used in children.
Remember that lowering a fever in a child without symptoms is only a temporary measure to improve the condition. Normalization of the condition does not mean that he has recovered and does not replace the consultation of a doctor.
When to seek medical advice
It is difficult for parents to understand the reasons for the temperature in a child without symptoms. Therefore, if they are sure that it is not overheating, they should consult a doctor. The doctor will conduct a thorough examination, prescribe an examination. It is recommended to pass a general blood test, to determine the ESR (erythrocyte sedimentation rate), C-reactive protein (CRP). The general analysis of urine is informative: according to its results, it is possible to assess the work of the urinary system.
Taking anamnesis helps in the diagnosis. For example, there was contact with an infectious patient. Or a baby 7 months old, recently he has profuse salivation, he “drags everything into his mouth” to chew.
Such an approach will help to identify what led to this condition and will help to choose an adequate treatment. If necessary, the pediatrician will write a referral for hospitalization.
If, after the examination, there are no deviations, you will need to take measurements at home for some time. This is necessary to find out if the child has a high fever without symptoms. Measure it 5 – 7 days, 4 times / day, at the same time, in the armpit. Record all results: show them to your pediatrician at your next appointment.
You should be careful when there are “red flags”. These conditions require the exclusion of dangerous conditions. These include:
- joint pain, joint deformation;
- swollen lymph nodes;
- weight loss;
- night sweats, which appeared against the background of hyperthermia;
- excessive fatigue, weakness, when the usual loads become unfeasible;
- refusal to eat, drink;
- frequent urination, night going to the toilet.
It is also urgent to call a doctor when the condition is accompanied by severe abdominal pain, pallor, cramps, confusion, delirium, or when the drug has not helped.
What does subfebrile t mean
Subfebrile is considered t 37.1 – 38.0 ° C. With these values, the baby can feel good. Hyperthermia develops against the background of acute and chronic pathologies listed above, or is normal for a small person. It is necessary to exclude the life-threatening diseases listed above. You may need to consult an immunologist, otorhinolaryngologist, endocrinologist, neurologist, orthopedist to deal with the situation.
Many of the diseases that we talked about can be the result of reduced immunity. Methods such as hardening (pouring cold water on the legs), healthy sleep, a varied diet (the mandatory presence of fruits, vegetables, vegetable, animal fats, and meat in the diet), sufficient walks in the fresh air will help to increase resistance to disease. Take vitamins. Vaccination on the calendar: they will protect the baby from infectious diseases.
Do not forget that t weakens the body. Therefore, monitor the baby’s health, follow the doctor’s recommendations for treatment. Do not attribute all cases of hyperthermia to “teeth”: first, exclude pathology.